Sunday, March 10, 2013

Light duty ceiling hoist on box rail .

As a golf course mechanic there is a lot of lifting heavy reels to service and grind. Mine are moved from the machine to my roll top table and back to the grinder and sometimes onto benches waiting to be ground .
Originally I inquired on Golftechs about a lift dolly to pick reels up to get to my roll top etc . There are some great models out there but are pretty pricey . Some of the guys had pics of this idea .After running the idea with the superintendent it was approved .  Very affordable and will save me from doing a lot of  heavy lifting . The 5410 reels I work on are near the 120 lbs mark plus we have groomers and brush kits on them . After moving 10 of these around it can get pretty tiring . With this set up I won't have to wait around for someone to give me a lift , I'll be able to do it all on my own . In mid season the crew is busy and are not around till break or lunch .

To start with I went up in the attic and marked /poked wires through where the roof trusses are . I purchased some heavy duty angle iron with pre drilled holes . Much like a meccano set I started to installing them on each rafter .
 Almost done , I have 4 left to do here . I also joined them together with the same angle iron . Took a bit to get it lined up perfectly straight . The rail will run from the grinder 12 ' to the roll top . The rail will have to be level . After I was finished I purchased barn door box rail which is rated for 450 lbs . This was bolted to the angle iron every 2 ' or less .
 I purchased a ceiling hoist from Princess Auto for around $200 and attached it to 2 barn door hangers ( rated at 220 lbs each ). I just drilled the mounting plate on the hoist and attached it to the rollers using only the mounting bolts . Also adjust hoist  level . Very important to install bolts at the end of the rails so it doesn't slide off the rail .

Here is the final product . I did stand on the liftbar and reel and it had no problem lifting . Do not lift more than 400 lbs . I will be able to lift my Toro 5410 fairway units reels (140 lbs+)and the entire Jacobsen PGMs ( 275 lbs. +) now .

A small video of it in operation . I'll post a better video when the guys can give me a hand .

Total cost was under $500  in materials . Benefits = less down time + less chance for back injury .


  1. This is exactly what I'm doing in my garage, couple of questions... Did you use lag bolts to bolt to the rafters? Also, I see the 90° pre-drilled rail bolted to the barn rail, can you explain how you bolted it to the vertical hanger? Is it just bolted, or did you do anything else? How's the whole thing holding up? I have the same hoist, going to be used to move heavy items in the garage and to lift big items up onto a storage shelf.

  2. This comment has been removed by the author.

  3. This comment has been removed by the author.

  4. Works great for loads up to 400 lbs . I would double up a 2x12 and go top side across rafters and hang to the sides of that . Brace ends of beam so it doesn't roll over .